Leaving Florida

Withlacoochie Park, Dade City, Florida
We are packing up to head North, and it's not without mixed feelings. We are excited about getting home and going to work again, but it's very hard to say goodbye to a place that has become home to us.

We have spent a great deal of time healing and recovering here, it has been a refuge from the daily assault of life on the road.
Withlacoochie Park, Dade City, Florida
Withlacoochie Park, Dade City, Florida
Withlacoochie Park, Dade City, Florida
Withlacoochie Park, Dade City, Florida
The Atlantic Ocean Anastasia State Park, St. Augustine, Florida
Doyle on The Atlantic Ocean
Doyle on The Gulf of Mexic
Withlacoochie Park, Dade City, Florida

Most of these images are from Withlacoochie River Park in Dade City Florida, a place we have Wintered at for many years. It's one of those places that's off the beaten track, a jewel in the midst of urban sprawl.
The rest of the pictures are from St. Augustine on the Atlantic and Pine Island on the Gulf side.

Perhaps a few words about Florida would be appropriate here...many people have told us that they hate what Florida has become and wouldn't live here for anything.

I'm the first to admit Florida has it's problems, we have witnessed a drive by shooting, and have seen her homeless and over urbanization. 

We think, especially in these troubled times, that Florida is simply showing more symptoms of a general state of dispair that is seizing the entire country. 

Some people think we should be wary in Florida. We say that no matter where you are you had better be wary, trouble is everywhere, maybe just not as obvious. No one is truly safe and security is just an illusion.  

We don't think you are any safer, or better off anywhere else, the problems just haven't reached you yet or they have and you just don't have the concentrated population that makes these things more apparent.

Poverty is everywhere. Crime is everywhere. Troubled times are on everyone's doorstep. You can't avoid it unless you crawl into a hole and pull the dirt in after you and we feel that is not the way to live...it's what happens to you when you die

We aren't ready for that. Nor are we going to wax poetic on the "Good Old Days" or any other such unobtainable rubbish that just doesn't exist any more.

Life is what it is. We find there is treasure in every situation and area, we love the windswept, silent solemnity of the great Northern Wilderness but there isn't much happening there. It's great to visit when we want to recover our connection with the earth.

But then it's time to return to civilization and take on the challenge of meeting the world on its own terms. You can't make a difference if you aren't in the picture.

We are resolved to teach the ways of the past to a group of people who have lost their way and you can't do that in a bunker.

We also feel that there is hidden beauty in every situation, most New Yorkers can take you to a place in the city where there is a refuge hidden from obvious sight. The same goes for Florida.

If you take your time and hit the back roads, you can find many oasis of serenity and beauty. There are great forests and hidden lakes. There are open spaces and spectacular scenery just waiting beyond the hustle that is Interstate Florida and Urban Orlando.

There are wonderful people along the way to of every nationality and station in life. If you have an open mind and some common sense, they will welcome you into their homes and show you a side of Florida that never hits the National news.

We have been to such places and met such people that it has endeared itself to our hearts so much that we now choose to call Florida our home. It's not for everybody, but for us it's a place where we can live as we choose, either in the woods or in the city, and not be intimidated or swayed by Folks who really don't seem to understand her.
Florida has the best Sunsets...

Perhaps today is our last day, but we won't be found in a bunker. Instead we will be caught running, laughing, crying and being a part of this thing messy thing we call life.

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